Tuesday, Alabama Governor Kay Ivey (R) has awarded a $25,000 grant to assist a nonprofit organization that helps children whose parents or loved ones are currently in jail or in prison.
The nonprofit group, Extended Family for Kids, will use the grant funds to expand its availability to schools across Alabama. The program uses curriculum that helps children in grades K-12 reduce stress, deal with anger and make good choices today and in the future. The program is designed to help the children shed the shame and stigma associated with having a family member who is incarcerated, as well as learning to deal with bullying and to express anger in a healthy manner.
“Children whose loved ones are imprisoned can face tough circumstances through no fault of their own, and they deserve to have access to care and education which can help their daily lives,” Gov. Ivey said. “I commend the work of Extended Family for Kids, and I am pleased to provide this assistance as the organization seeks to offer access to its programs to schools throughout the state.”
The Governor notified Laure Clemons, Extended Family executive director, that the grant had been approved.
Currently, EFK programs are offered only in schools within Cherokee County. With this grant, EFK leader workshops will be led in Calhoun, Etowah and Jefferson counties, and 100 school counselors from around the state will be trained to start the program in their schools.
The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs is administering the grant from funds made available by the U.S. Justice Department.
“ADECA joins Gov. Ivey in supporting of Extended Family for Kids and its efforts to help those children with incarcerated parents and loved ones,” said ADECA Director Kenneth Boswell.
ADECA administers an array of programs supporting law enforcement and traffic safety, economic development, energy conservation, water resource management and recreation development.
According to their website, since 2003, Extended Family has been teaching families of prisoners how to successfully adjust to a new way of life. They offer a free, solution-based approach to the prison experience.